Re: curbs and sidewalks letter, (The NEWS, Sept. 23).
I would like your readers to know that there is another “side” to the sidewalk/curb issue. That other side is storm water.
When storm water or rainwater hits pavement or other impervious surfaces it doesn’t get absorbed. So what happens when it hits the road that has a curb and gutter? It runs into a pipe where it is rushed — pollutants and all — into the nearest stream or else out to the ocean. In both cases, especially the streams, it harms fish and destroys stream habitat by increasing the flow. This causes erosion, sedimentation and loss of stream side vegetation. Nearly all our urban streams suffer because of old-fashioned storm water management.
So, what if we don’t care about what happens to our fish and fish habitat? Well, I think we care about our drinking water. When rainwater doesn’t get absorbed, our aquifers are not being recharged. Water is a renewable resource if we look after it. Qualicum Beach should be congratulated for its storm water management.